Where to Catch Live Music in SMTX
By Ricky Galindo
For San Marcos, 2016 welcomed several new music stages in AquaBrew, Buzz Mill, Chances R, Crafthouse Kitchen & Tap, the Growling, Kiva, the Pitch, the Spot and Valentino’s. Including the nine new additions, San Marcos is now home to roughly 30 music venues and counting. They range from quaint coffee shops to the new 709-seat Texas State University Performing Arts Center. These venues offer a range of live performances; from the professional Attacca Quartet named first Ensemble-in-Residence at Texas State University–School of Music to intimate acoustic shows at the Root Cellar Bakery and Catering Company. A weekly list of performances can be found on our website at toursanmarcs.com/livethisweek or on our Facebook page Tour San Marcos.
Here is what you need to know if you are looking for live music in San Marcos, Texas:
AquaBrew is focused on community and quality. Beer is brewed in view of the bar in large polished tins. Liquor and wine is also served. Food is prepared by one of three professional chefs who deliver a consistent, delicious and aesthetically pleasing meal. The building is separated into three service areas: the dining area, outside beer garden and rooftop. Live music is scheduled every night of the week, barring a special event or holiday. AquaBrew is located at 150 S. LBJ Dr. Public, and valet, parking is available. 18+
Chances R is quietly one of the longest tenured bar stops in San Marcos. Previously known as Restless Wind, the fanciful oasis changed ownership and name in 2013. The building is separated into two servicing areas: the outside patio and inside lounge. Local music is scheduled every Saturday night, barring a special event or holiday. Open Poetry Night is scheduled one Wednesday per month. Chances R is a full service bar. 21+
The famous Austin based diner has expanded to San Marcos. The patio area serves as the entrance to an open concept building. The venue is still new and a consistent schedule is being developed. Buzz Mill is Located at 194 S. Guadalupe St.
Cheatham Street Warehouse
The historic Cheatham Street Warehouse is home to Kent Finlay’s Songwriting Circle. Talents cultivated in this venue include George Strait, Randy Rogers, Kyle Park, Guy Clark, Townes Van Zandt, Hal Ketchum and Al Barlow to name a few. Live music is performed every night barring a special event or holiday. Ticket information and live music schedule can be found here. Cheatham Street is located at 119 Cheatham St. Full service bar. 21+
Crafthouse Kitchen & Tap
Crafthouse Kitchen & Tap is a new addition to the San Marcos music scene. The full-service restaurant and bar is separated into three servicing areas: the bar, dinning area and outside patio. Live music is scheduled Friday, Saturday, and Sunday on the beautiful Live Local Music stage. Located at 242 N. LBJ Dr. in downtown San Marcos, one block down from the square and 3 blocks from Texas State University. 18+
Eddie Durham Park
Named in honor of San Marcos native Eddie Durham, the first man to record the electric guitar. Park features include gazebo, park benches, domino pavilion and xylophones. Local music is schedule through San Marcos Community Services’ event titled Sounds of San Marcos Open Mic Night. Guests are invited to bring food, blankets and pets. Eddie Durham Park is located at 217 MLK Dr. All ages.
Located in downtown San Marcos on the Square. The building is a shotgun style design separated into three sections, the stage, the bar and back lounge. Live music is scheduled Thursday and Friday night. Green Parrot is a full service bar located at 124 N. LBJ. 21+
The Growling Texas Beer Bar
A growler is a 64-ounce jug used specifically for tap beer - a resurgent way of drinking and buying beer among enthusiast. The bottle belongs to the patron while the venue rotates the tap selection among local brewers. Growlers may be purchased, brought in for sealed refills, or used in the venue. Live music is scheduled Thursday, Friday and Saturday, barring a special event or holiday. The Growling is located at 700 N. LBJ Dr. Suite 111. Beer only. 21+
Happy Cow Bar & Grill
Located in Hunter, Texas, an unincorporated town between San Marcos and New Braunfels, this property falls under New Braunfels jurisdiction and as consequence a 12am serving law. Happy Cow Bar & Grill is a full service bar and kitchen. Live music is scheduled Friday and Saturday. 21+
Hay’s County BBQ
What has been a summer music series is under construction as a year-round music and dining venue. Construction is scheduled to complete in April 2017 and will remain open during the process. Hay’s County BBQ offers two servicing areas, the indoor dinning lounge and covered dinning hall. No liquor is served. Live music will resume once construction is complete. Hay’s County BBQ is located at 1612 S. IH35. All ages.
Hay’s County Historic Court House
Art Squared – Arts Market is a public showcase of local talent displaying paintings, sculptures, jewelry, crafts and live music. Performances are scheduled the second Saturday of spring, summer and fall months, in conjunction with the art market. The Hays County Historic Courthouse is the centerpiece of downtown San Marcos affectionately referred to as the Square. Information on Art Squared Art Market can be found here. Hays County Historical Court House is located at 111 E. San Antonio St. All Ages.
Jack’s Roadhouse Bar & Grill
Community events are scheduled through ownership. A barbeque competition and Save the Stage Music Benefit are held annually. The venue is separated into two servicing areas, the indoor stage and outside patio. Live music is scheduled Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The venue operates a full service kitchen, beer and wine. Jack’s Roadhouse is located at 1625 Hunter Road. 21+
Kent Black’s BBQ
The venue is divided into the four separate servicing areas: the indoor dinning area, private dinning area, outdoor patio and bar. Live music is scheduled Friday, Saturday and Sunday barring a special event or holiday. The venue does operate a full service bar. Kent Black’s BBQ is located at 510 Hull St. All ages.
Kiva Lounge & Bar
Kiva Lounge & Bar is another newer name in the San Marcos music scene. The venue is separated into two areas, the main bar lounge and back lounge. Plans for an additional outdoor patio have been approved. Live music is scheduled daily, barring a special event or holiday. Ticket and scheduling information can be found here. Kiva is located at 202 N. LBJ in downtown San Marcos. 21+
Louie’s Oyster House & Beer Garden
Louie’s Oyster House is a beer garden style venue located at 119 E. Hutchison St. in downtown San Marcos. Live music is scheduled Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, barring a special event or holiday. The stage is a centerpiece on the property with dedicated bar and viewing area. Louie’s also hosts the official watch party of Texas State Football.
Formerly known as the Texas Music Theatre, The Marc changed names and ownership in 2013. The venue has a max capacity of 1000. Elevated stage and professionally installed sound system make the Marc the premier stage in downtown San Marcos. Scheduling and ticket information can be found here. Full-service bar and table service is available for special events. The Marc is the home of the Texas Music Scene with Ray Benson, a television series showcasing Texas Country musicians. Live recordings are scheduled throughout the year. The Marc is located at 120 E. San Antonio St. 21+ unless announced otherwise.
Middleton Brewing Company
Middleton Brewing Company opened in 2011. The building is separated into three service areas: the outside patio, indoor bar and rooftop. Food trucks are available Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Live Music is scheduled Friday, Saturday and Monday, barring a special event or holiday. Middleton Brewing Company is located at 101 Oakwood Loop. 21+
Opened August 2016, The Pitch is also a newer live music venue in San Marcos. Music is scheduled Fridays, barring a special event or holiday. The venue is separated into two open areas: the loft and lounge. The Pitch offers craft cocktails in a professional setting and is located at 700 N. LBJ Site 113. 21+
Located in Hunter, Texas, an unincorporated town between San Marcos and New Braunfels. The property falls under New Braunfels jurisdiction and as consequence a 12am serving law. Riley’s Tavern is listed as the first bar in Texas after the prohibition era. Live music is scheduled every night of the week barring a special event or holiday. Ticket information can be found here. 21+
Root Cellar Bakery & Catering Company
Located at 142 N. LBJ Dr. The storefront is transformed into a special acoustic stage for local artist the first Saturday of each month. Beer and wine are available. Root Cellar Bakery operates as a full services coffee and pastry shop. Seating is adjusted accordingly. All ages.
San Marcos Plaza Park
The Summer in the Park Concert Series has been a seasonal event for 30 years in San Marcos Plaza Park. The park features include river access, open field, pavilion, and stage. The public park hosts community events throughout the year and has staged a wide range or artists. Plaza Park is Located at 202 N. C M Allen Pkwy. All ages.
The Spot Cinema Eatery & Social Haus
Combination luxury movie theatre, bowling alley, arcade, full service bar and live music venue, the Spot has a little something for everyone. Music is scheduled in the seated event area serviced by the bar. The Spot is located at 1180 Thorpe Ln. in the Spring Town Shopping Center. 18+
Superfly’s Lone Star Music Emporium
The Texas Music industry has its own record store. Accompanied with local artists’ record and merchandise the venue host free in-store performances. Popular acts include the Band of Heathens, Whiskey Myers, Guy Clark, Hays Carl, Jack Ingram, the Randy Rogers Band and Wade Bowen, to name a few. You can find a live music schedule here. Superfly’s music store is located at 202 University Dr. All ages.
Tantra Coffee House
The venue is separated into three servicing areas, the lounge, patio and outdoor stage. Live music is scheduled Saturday. Located at 217 W. Hopkins St., Tantra Coffee House is a full service restaurant and coffee shop. Schedule and ticket information can be found here. All ages
Texas State University-Performing Arts Center
Located at the Corner of University Dr. and Moon St. the Texas State Performing Arts Center offers a classical setting for music. Coupled with the announcement of the Texas State School of Music inaugural Ensemble-in-Residence, the Attacca Quartet, several faculty and student performances are schedule through the performing art center. For a schedule of upcoming performances through the Texas State School of Music click here. For a schedule of upcoming performances held at the Performing Arts Center click here.
Three Dudes Winery
Founded in 2005, the venue is separated into two areas, the outside patio and inside bar. Of course, only wine is served. Three Dudes Winery is Located at 125 Old Martindale Rd. Live music is scheduled the first Friday of each month. All ages.
Valentino’s Pizza live music nights are a cultural phenomenon. Located at 110 N. LBJ Dr. Local performers include Lantic, Shaker Hymes, Rust Dusty and the Jeffers to name a few. Live music is scheduled Wednesday and Thursday, barring a special event or a holiday. Music is scheduled at 7pm. Plan accordingly.
Wake the Dead Coffee House
Community oriented, Wake the Dead offers craft beer, coffee, and finger foods. The venue is separated into three separate areas: the coffee bar, lounge and outside patio. Live music is scheduled Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, barring a special event or holiday.
A 1930’s refurbished gas station, the beer garden style venue is separated into three areas: front lounge, bar lounge and backyard patio. Located at 336 W. Hopkins St., Zelicks is a full service bar. Live music is scheduled Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Saturday, barring a special event or holiday. 21+